Southwest Research Institute and The University of Texas at San Antonio are collaborating to combine two catalytic processes into a single reactor, with the overall goal of recycling carbon from CO2 to produce low-cost hydrocarbon fuels.
Southwest Research Institute and The University of Texas at San Antonio are collaborating to combine two catalytic processes into a single reactor, with the overall goal of recycling carbon from CO2 to produce low-cost hydrocarbon fuels. The work, led by Dr. Grant Seuser of SwRI’s Powertrain Engineering Division and Dr. Gary Jacobs of UTSA’s College of Engineering, is supported by a $125,000 grant from the Connecting through Research Partnerships (Connect) Program.
Greenhouse gas emissions are expected to increase by about 17% by 2040 as a result of increasing energy and transportation needs in the developing world.
“We’re facing a lack of renewable fuels and the technology to deliver cleaner power generation,” Seuser said. “We’re seeing a rise in battery-powered passenger vehicles, but the high power demands of the aviation, locomotive, shipping, and long-haul trucking industries will continue to require energy-dense hydrocarbons for the foreseeable future.”
Seuser and Jacobs propose using a process called carbon dioxide (CO2) hydrogenation to produce cleaner renewable liquid hydrocarbon fuels for transportation. To accomplish this, they plan to build a single reactor capable of performing two chemical processes in one step. The first will react hydrogen with CO2 to make carbon monoxide (CO) and the second will convert the CO and hydrogen, a blend known as synthesis gas or syngas, into liquid hydrocarbon fuel by a catalytic process known as Fischer-Tropsch synthesis.
Read more at Southwest Research Institute
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